Saints & Soldiers: The Void – Behind the Scenes, Episode 2: Home Made Panzer III

Saints & Soldiers: The Void – Behind the Scenes, Episode 2: Home Made Panzer III


We are in Alpine, Utah on the set of Saints & Soldiers: The Void. Standing next to me is Randy Beard who, amongst having various roles on the film, also owns a Panzer III – a cool little item to have! So I guess we’ll start off with what your roles are on the film. Well, I’m Executive Producer, German Military Advisor and that takes me into the Armorer, supplying several of the weapons: all of the 98k rifles and MP40’s and whatnot. You constructed a Panzer III. Now, there are a lot of Panzers out there that you look at it and immediately you know that it is not a real Panzer III. This one, in all fairness, especially from here up, this looks the part. Yes. So, where do you start? If you’re going to build a Panzer III that looks this much like a Panzer III, how do you do it? Well, my original thought was with the time and effort and money that’s going to go into it, I really didn’t want to settle. So I purchased an M113 demilitarized that had been cut off just above the tracks. So let’s say in a moment of insanity I decided that I was going to start to build my own tank. I would say that you need to know going into it that it’s basically a lifestyle. It really is. This is not something that you would do, like on a weekend, or as kind of a side-line hobby thing. The amount of work involved, even just in maintaining these vehicles is tremendous. You have to have a place to store it, you have to have a place to work on it, haul it. I think that’s kind of the differentiation between this reproduction and most of the reproductions that are out there. You can make a reproduction relatively inexpensive, I guess, in relative terms, and quickly if you take an existing vehicle and then cut the top off and put another top on top of it. Unfortunately, the whole layout doesn’t conform to the German specification. So in this case you do have the engine at the back and the transmission is at the front. Yeah, we re-worked everything, so everything’s in the correct configuration. Everything is to spec. And where do you get a 5cm cannon? Well, that is used oil field pipe. OK, so the film is set at the very, very end of World War II. I mean, we’re talking the last couple of days. Panzer III – not really standard issue for the front line German army of that period. How do we explain Panzer IIIs in this movie? Well, as you well know, the Panzer III basically went obsolete in 1943, right after Kursk. It was replaced by the Panther. So they took the Panzer IIIs and took turrets off, they used them as ammunition haulers, artillery spotting vehicles, command vehicles and things like that. A lot of them got transferred into training schools for Panzer grenadiers or tank training. So, in the script of this movie basically that’s the explanation of why we have three Panzer III’s. They’ve been pulled into service out of training school. And, considering what they’re going up against, in this case M18s, they’re actually still quite viable. Yeah, that’s one of the things that makes this work. The Hellcat is so thinly armoured, that at the ranges that we’re firing here, this 50mm is as deadly to him as his 76mm is to us. So it’s kind of a fair fight. This is an early mount. They came out with a really fancy one later. This is something probably field improvised, more or less. This is a bit of a narrow fit, even for myself and I’m not the widest guy. I think the guys in the 40s were smaller by nature. You did a wonderful job on the outside. Let’s see how you did on the inside. OK. Well, they put a nice convenient handle here, it has to be said. OK, I’m already stuck. My very first thought is, that’s a bit disconcerting that you have a breach that is going to recoil right towards your testicles. Yes. Yes it is. It is…definitely cozy in here. There’s no two ways about this. And I think the original model would be even more cozy because down below here we don’t have the ammo rack, all of the ammo storage bins. So you’ve got a seat, I’ve got a seat. Everyone’s got a seat except the loader. He had to just kind of walk around. Yeah he’s got no floor does he. Yeah, and he would have a lot less area to stand. As the turret rotates, there’s no basket. There’s no floor. So he’s got to be stepping over the drive shaft and around the bins and everything else. So, he’d have to be pretty agile. So what do you shoot? We have 40mm Bofors salute rounds. They’re about 2.5 inch diameter. Maybe about 5 inches long. We put 4 ounces of black powder and then spray foam in the end, so the foam disintegrates as it goes down the barrel. That’s what you were popping off a little earlier? Yup. That’s what happens. Nice big handles. Which are, I presume, modelled after the Mk. III? Yes. They’re the correct length, and the angles on them, and things like that. It’s in the right configuration. The word “pivot,” I was going to add, doesn’t really go with this tank. You don’t use the word “pivot” and this tank in the same sentence. It’s kind of a sweeping turn. I wish it would pivot. It’s kind of gotten fuzzy. Do you read the little sign Driver! This is an amputating and killing machine. Drive carefully. These people are your friends! I’m in a tank. We try not to crunch people up. No? What if they were zombies? If they were zombies, that’s fine. OK. Fascinating tank. I have to say again. Congratulations on building this. I’m very curious to see what your Mk. IV will look like when it’s done. I’m going to come out and see it. Well, thank you very much. And we’ll see you next time! This 66mm cannon… …pull this lever. So it’s on the way. Bang!

55 Replies to “Saints & Soldiers: The Void – Behind the Scenes, Episode 2: Home Made Panzer III”

  1. 1 thing I've never been able to figure out is how the driver and machine gunner/radio operator got in and got out….they don't have any obvious hatches. Any answers anybody?

  2. For all you to know ,in patch 9.3 KV 1S is going to be replaced with 2 tanks tier V and VI
    Hellcat is going to be nerfed
    Several light tanks higher tier in game ( Russia,Germany ) 

  3. You can tell it's not a real Pz III because it has only 5 "small" wheels on the bottom, not 6. I learned that fact from the Chieftain.

  4. It's not original? Didn't anyone think to restore a Pz3 or Pz4? They were important machines and there were so many produced. Why aren't there any working ones these days?

  5. next video if you dont put something like best replays of the week i will unsubscribe 7 videos i did not vatched

  6. not enough time to review tanks properly at museums…..making commercials for a B-movie instead 😛

  7. Very great work, not like in films or series like "Band of Brothers" where they use a T-34 with a modified upper hull and turret as a Tiger

  8. so basically, its a tank crew that's "pinned down" by a pz3 and stay in the building rather than get into there hellcat and blow the tank away? and there racism in it

  9. Great video, great job on the tank, watched the 2 films, I must say they are downright terrible… Historically it might be good, but it's so awefully cliché and without goal… except trying to make people convert (???)

    tl;dr: Don't watch Saints & Soldiers, you're better off playing WoT

  10. That is an amazing amount of work done for a replica considering what's available parts wise.  It's refreshing and awesome to see that kind of dedication, especially for a movie.  Though it is not 100% correct, it's closer than most will ever go.

  11. uhm theres a robbery planning with my buddies could you come here and pick us up and fire some "blind" ammor? XDDDDDDDDDDDD Just kidding. Make a video how you go to McDonalds drive trhu window and check the guys faces Xd

  12. Interesting statement about building tanks in the game, yet there's not animation for it in the garage :/ Not even an animated crew for your tank

  13. I am always amazed that many tank designs did not include a turret basket. Of course we're talking the era of hand cranked turrets or very slowly powered ones. As a former Bradley Commander I would be terrified to slew a basketless turret.

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